MTG Getting To Know You

A place to talk about standard, casual, limited and everything in between.
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Duckay
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MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 27 Jun 2013, 20:06

I thought it would be interesting to find out something of how each of us approach the game of magic. Maybe it will be a jumping off point to talk about where we differ, or maybe just some information so we know how each other thinks about the game (which could be useful when offering advice to each other!)

I know a lot of this stuff has come up here and there through other threads, but it might be nice to have it together.

So, talk about how you like to approach the game! Do you play casually with friends, at FNM, online, big events? What's your favourite format? Your favourite colour? Do you have a favourite playstyle or deck archetype?
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby JackSlack » 27 Jun 2013, 20:11

Personally, I don't play much at all: If I do, it's either kitchen table or a rare casual FNM deal. I very, very much prefer casual play with nothing on the table but bragging rights. (And, y'know, magic cards. Maybe a d20.) As such, I couldn't care less about format and slouch into modern. My favourite color is green, and my favorite style of play is Big Green Ramp.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Lurkon » 27 Jun 2013, 20:36

I play casually with a small group of friends, or I draft, usually online or at a prerelease. Commander is Far and Away my favorite format, and when I buy singles from Card Kingdom, that's why I'm buying them.

I hate it when people start calling a card garbage, either because it "isn't relevant in standard" or it "is unplayable in limited." In a lot of those cases the card DOES have a format in which it shines, like Commander, perhaps. For my part, I try not to do that.

Another pet peeve of mine is when people start telling me what to do with my decks. I know I'm just as guilty as everyone else, but I DO try so very hard not to tell someone that their deck is trash and that they should really be running this deck with their sealed pool, instead of the deck they actually want to play. I want to have fun playing magic, and I want others to have fun, and sometimes the competitive mindset of other players makes that more difficult than it needs to be. This is primarily why I play with my friends.

TL;DR: I mostly play commander with my very small group of friends, and occasionally draft MTGO.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby ZePancakes » 27 Jun 2013, 20:40

Most events I play are online due to the differences in prize structure but will occasionally play casual FNM to play wacky decks that wouldn't stand against serious players. Honestly, playing with friends makes it SO much more fun. Extended is my favourite because of the larger selection of sets to base decks on. Whilst Modern is so set in its ways I can't step to that. Colour? Red because nothing feels better than putting the beat down early. Combination? NOT GRUUL? THEN DIE.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Lord Hosk » 27 Jun 2013, 20:41

I enjoy draft first, then sealed, followed by constructed standard. I dont play anything else.

When I draft its MOST often very very agro if I can get my curve under 3 I am happy. My perfect deck in RTR block is Boros, with a a couple madcaps and some ethereal armor.

In sealed I go a little slower my favorite in RTR is a Azorious deck with some Selesnya. I like to detain into big creatures.

When I play standard I like to build fun decks. I never net deck I dont give a crap what other people play I want to play my game. I do pay attention to the meta game I take note of what beats me and try to shape my deck so I can beat it or survive it but I try not to get obsessed with beating any one deck or card. I really like to start with a flavor or a idea and find cards that fit it or a card I enjoy so I build a deck around it like my beatleform mage deck. When I went to PAX east I built a really fun 10 land red deck with a curve of 1.4.

All in all with Magic I like to play I dont care if I win or lose if my opponent is nice. I dont like to win or lose on mana screw, I have on a few occasions passed a couple turns "forgetting to draw" when my opponent has to discard early, its not fun when you have 4 mana 3 creatures and tricks in hand and they are on two plains tossing 5 drop black cards into the bin.

I also really like the scope of the game I like to envision the duels are REALLY duels that either we are two planeswalkers fighting over something or two pals just testing our strength against one another. I like to try to tell a story while I play and envision the world in which the battle is taking place.

Rather than: "I tap two land and play a riot piker. then I tap a land and play my ethereal armor card"

"I call to mind a vision of that great mountain that feeds the river I was born next to, I link myself to the memory of the forest where my father taught me to hunt, and I summon a goblin, the one with the lightning fast strike who wields his pike with such fervor always diving headlong into a fight without care of who he fights. To protect him from harm I summon forth the energy of the plains on which I was raised, I form the energy into a armor around him which grows in power as I feed more protecting magic onto the field of battle."
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 27 Jun 2013, 20:43

Lurkon wrote:I hate it when people start calling a card garbage, either because it "isn't relevant in standard" or it "is unplayable in limited." In a lot of those cases the card DOES have a format in which it shines, like Commander, perhaps. For my part, I try not to do that.


I'm guilty of that a lot, or at least I fear I am. Sometimes, I'll unthinkingly say something like "no, that card's crap", and I know I mean "in this context that I am thinking of", not realizing that most people can't read my mind and so are not privy to that context.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Lord Hosk » 27 Jun 2013, 20:51

I never criticizes someone for running a card, I will sometimes ask them about it but I figure everyone runs the deck they run because its what they either picked, or had available to them.

I cant afford expensive rares, well, I feel I would be wasting money buying expensive rares. I can buy 4 Geist of Saint Traft or I can do 5 or 6 drafts and roll any winnings into more drafts.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 27 Jun 2013, 20:53

Personally, I play a bit of a lot of things. I play sealed at pre-releases, draft maybe once a fortnight, and modern and commander every now and again. I never really thought about it this way until now, but I suppose standard constructed is my favourite; it's certainly what I play most often.

I suppose I take the game fairly seriously. I don't netdeck, but I do like to keep abreast of what's happening in the meta, and I play FNM weekly and try not to miss any bigger tournaments that are happening in Sydney (like Popalot, GPs, PTQs, etc). At the same time, I try to temper that depending on where I'm playing, so I have "fun" decks that I enjoy playing and work just fine but aren't really competitive in the meta, "silly" decks that try out a combo that I like and "competitive" decks that I'm trying to refine for stuff like a PTQ.

I also always knew that I really liked red, but I didn't realize how much red aggro is my "thing" until a player, a guy I've met at events but barely know, sat down for a game with me at Popalot and said, "Okay, now, from experience, you'll be wanting to burn my face. What do you have against my face?"
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 27 Jun 2013, 20:54

Lord Hosk wrote:I never criticizes someone for running a card, I will sometimes ask them about it but I figure everyone runs the deck they run because its what they either picked, or had available to them.


I should also note, I try to only say things like that when talking about, for example, spoilers for the next set, or prospective cards for a deck I'm putting together.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Kapol » 27 Jun 2013, 21:26

I play competitively more often than not. The FNMs I go to are pretty serious about playing, and a lot of people netdeck. However, I dislike netdecking quite a bit. I feel it's kind of unfair, since you're not using your deck. You're using someone else's deck without their permission or knowledge. Though I only go to FNM and prereleases right now. All the bigger events near me are two hour drives at the very best, normally more. Plus I don't think I'm good enough to do well at them.

I love draft. Limited in general is preferred, but I love the more fluid and interactive nature that draft brings to the game. I don't play as much as I'd like though. Never played commander, but play a ton of standard.

My favorite color would likely be green, though I almost always play Green/White when I have the chance. I actually really like blue, but my vehement hatred of control magic steers me away from the color.

I'm most well known for giant smashy things. My main deck is all about getting out huge things. My token/lifegain deck is all about making my stuff huge through stuff like Cathars' Crusade and Collective Blessing. I've also been running some more combo fun decks too. Like my Infinite Reflection deck, or my Simic counters deck.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 27 Jun 2013, 21:40

Kapol wrote: I feel it's kind of unfair, since you're not using your deck. You're using someone else's deck without their permission or knowledge.


Just out of curiosity, which of those factors do you emphasize in your dislike of net decking - playing a deck list that isn't solely yours, or playing a deck without the original creator's knowledge/permission? I've heard arguments for both before, but I'm a little iffy on the former argument. By extension, that would also speak poorly of people who work together with friends to write a list and I don't like that, but at the same time, I respect that playing a deck you built yourself is more satisfying and often demonstrates a greater understanding of card synergy and so on.

I'm sorry, I find discussions like this really interesting, I don't mean to be pushy or anything.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Kapol » 27 Jun 2013, 22:02

It's fine Duckay. It's honestly leaning towards it not being your own deck. Not having permission is a big deal, don't get me wrong. But it just bothers me when people don't use their own deck-building skill (which is a major part of Magic as a whole) to win. It really bothers me in competitive when there are prizes on the line a lot more for that reason. In casual games, it still feels like a dick move. But in competitive games, it feels unfair to me. That's also why goofy decks that are designed for fun rather than winning don't bother me so much too.

But for what you said about speaking poorly of people who work together to write a list, there's one point I'd like to clarify. I don't mind when people work with others to build their deck. Now, it's important they actually take part in the deck building. But having outside help isn't by itself bad.

I helped my friend build both of his decks. But in both cases, he started off with a strong idea of where he wanted to take it to begin with. He knew he wanted Vampire Aggro for one deck, and Green Ramp for the other. Since I knew the cards at the time better, I gave him some help. But he still had full control of the deck. I'd make suggestions, but he'd be the one to choose if he should follow him or not. There were plenty of cards he chose not to take out because he liked them.

I personally consider that to be HIS deck. He might have had help, but he was the one who came up with main design and made all the choices. People made suggestions and helped him, but in the end it all came down to him. With net decking, that's not the case. You get a list online from someone you likely don't know and use it, maybe making some slight adjustments in the process. It's that person's concept and design, or someone else's that they copied or worked with a group to design.

Now, one thing I will mention is that netdecking does have one place, especially for people who don't have a group of friends who actively play Magic. And that's into getting into new formats. Looking at net decks and using them to learn that style of deck or that format is something I can respect. But even then I think said person should adjust it a bit and use the net deck as a pointer rather than a guide.

I did this to get my current commander deck. I've played one game of commander ever using the deck I ended up building. None of the people I hang out with play commander. So I honestly didn't know where to start. I used a list on MtG's main site for one of the daily decklist as a guideline to start out. It had almost entirely new cards, so it actually used stuff I had access to. And even then, I adjusted the deck quite a bit when I first made it, and made many more changes since I originally built it. Had I not used that deck as a starting point, I'd honestly have never made a deck. I'd have no idea where to even begin. And even after that I made the deck more of my own 'thing' for better or worse.

TL;DR: Netdecking does have it's use. But I view using netdecks for competitive play to be kind of unfair. And in casual, it seems like a bit of a dick move to the other players unless you all do it knowingly. It can be a decent way to break into formats and learn them, but even then it shouldn't be done for any serious sense. Netdecking for silly decks not meant to win but to have fun is also more forgivable.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 27 Jun 2013, 22:46

I see your point. Looking at it that way, I suppose I am guilty of that with my current deck even though I've been giving myself a bit of a pass that it's not "the same" as someone net decking a top tier deck.

Long story short: I had a deck, that was very competent, but not outstanding. A friend of mine wrote up a deck list that was broadly similar but had pretty substantial differences, and suggested I give that version a try since it was more my "style" than his. I gave it a try and it worked well, but I then tweaked a few things after playing it a bit and refined it to how I like to play.

I would freely admit that's not my deck: it's his. I made some changes to it and I know it was inspired by my original list, and I can play it better than he can (no judgement on him for that, there's plenty of decks he plays that I just can't get my head around)... but ultimately, it was his idea, his strategy.

I've never really thought of that as being unfair in the same sense that net decking is. But I can't think of any logical reason why it isn't.

It's definitely food for thought.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Kapol » 27 Jun 2013, 22:51

I'd be more willing to forgive that because you aren't copying a top-tier deck like you mentioned. Plus, at least from the sound of it, you talked with him about it and he agreed to let you use it. That makes it different than a normal netdeck. Yea, I still have a bit of an issue with it, but that's not nearly as bad as many people do.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Volafortis » 27 Jun 2013, 23:10

To be fair, there are some cards that are just plain bad, and should basically just straight up never be played (see the Staff cycle in M14).
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 27 Jun 2013, 23:45

I don't disagree with you, Kapol, but I'd not thought of it like that before.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Kapol » 27 Jun 2013, 23:54

Volafortis wrote:To be fair, there are some cards that are just plain bad, and should basically just straight up never be played (see the Staff cycle in M14).


I can actually see the staffs being pretty good. The fact they trigger when you play a land makes it a decent amount better, and makes it work a lot better with ramp (though in that color I'd rather play Primeval Bounty). I see it being very good with that new angel that gives all your creatures +1/+1 when you gain any life. "I play a plains for turn, giving all my creatures +1/+1, and play 2-3 low-cost white spells for an extra +3/+3."

EDIT: That said, they're by no means great, and won't see any use outside of decks that utilize life gain like that. But I foresee my friend putting it in his casual white lifegain deck.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Lord Hosk » 28 Jun 2013, 04:16

When I refer to "Net decking" I am talking about individuals who go to Channel Fireball, Star City, or the mothership. They take either the deck list in the article, or the decklist of one of the top 8 from the major event, no thought no personal input then shuffle up and run it out at FNM.

I do not consider it net decking to read articles written by pros and say "oh that card works like that, or "Those cards have that interaction, I never thought of that"

But when I see
2 Azorius Guildgate
2 Boros Guildgate
2 Dimir Guildgate
2 Golgari Guildgate
2 Gruul Guildgate
2 Izzet Guildgate
4 Maze's End
3 Mountain
2 Orzhov Guildgate
2 Rakdos Guildgate
2 Selesnya Guildgate
2 Simic Guildgate
1 Swamp
28 lands

4 Saruli Gatekeepers
4 creatures

4 Devour Flesh
2 Dreadbore
3 Far // Away
1 Merciless Eviction
4 Mizzium Mortars
4 Mugging
1 Putrefy
2 Sphinx's Revelation
4 Urban Evolution
3 Warleader's Helix
28 other spells

Sideboard
4 Blood Baron of Vizkopa
2 Crackling Perimeter
2 Electrickery
3 Sin Collector
2 Sire of Insanity
2 Slaughter Games

I think "you know what, Im glad you arent playing the SAME deck as everyone else but Kenny Oberg didnt do amazing with that deck and he is a better player than you"

The reason that he did as well as he did is because No one expected someone to run a deck with Mazes end as a win con. The reason the Mono Green Agro deck won the Star City event last month was because it was unexpected it was outside the meta game. He tossed out a billion green wheenies with a billion pumps and out agroed everyone and if they verdicted him, it got better because he had so much undying.



Long story short: I had a deck, that was very competent, but not outstanding. A friend of mine wrote up a deck list that was broadly similar but had pretty substantial differences, and suggested I give that version a try ... I made some changes to it and I know it was inspired by my original list,


Duckay I dont consider you working with someone, or a group of friends working together to craft a deck to be net decking, thats just deck building. your friend took something you played, took something he knew you liked, and took time to build something he thought you would like to play. You took it and refined it.

That is distinctly different from "www.starcity.com/this-weeks-top-8" "hmmm I have the cards for the second place deck" (2, 4, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15... 60, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7...15) ok im off to FNM with my deck"

That being said it really irritates me when im at an event and I hear "hey (name) come look at this, what mana do I need" or "ok lets see, take out A and B and run your C and D, then take out a island and put in this Raktos gate for your D activation"

Build your own damn deck, 40 cards, base it with 23/17 your 17 to should be based on what you put in your damn deck. count your mana symbols, and look where they are. is it even with 18 w, 12 r and 6 b? is it 18 and 10 but that 10 is all low drops? I called a judge on a guy once because the draft ended he went and sat down and said "he (name) What would you build here" Seriously you arent even going to try, just "hey build my deck" JUDGE!

Technically asking for ANY advice is a no no but Im not going to begrudge someone saying "do you think this is too many plains?" or "do you think this card goes good or should I run that" but when you just have someone else build your deck especially in limited that takes a LOT of the play off the player. With a 40 card limited deck there is less in the moment strategy and much more "what do I have in my hand play it" so the deck build IS the strategy.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Duckay » 28 Jun 2013, 05:09

I consider that very poor form, bordering on flat out cheating, but I also get antsy when friends of my opponent are loitering around our game and making general commentary on the game state. So I have a pretty low threshold for that kind of thing. I don't know why; it's just the kind of person I am, I guess.

I've been known to make comments around deck building for limited like "oh, I'm running X land for Y reason, I hope it works out" to a friend, but I do my best to stop short of either giving or taking advice.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Clerik » 28 Jun 2013, 05:35

As a reply to OP then (also, i agree with you guys. Calling a judge like that isn't good at all, and if the judge did it it's even worse.)

I've played magic for six or seven or so years and have varied which formats. Since 2008 I've played mostly commander though occationally dropped in and drafted a bit. Triple Innistrad and DGM block has been the latest two formats.

As an EDH player I've done most of it by now. I tend to build control-heavy GB_ decks with a combo finish but not always. Favorite general is still Kresh.

I usually drop in into one LGS once a week to participate in some draft and then hang around after closing to play some ED and resolve some twincasted living deaths.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Lurkon » 28 Jun 2013, 05:44

Every once in awhile, I show up to a prerelease or something, and someone has a posse. They're someone who wins a lot locally or something, I think they have a high planeswalker points rating in SC... Anyway, they usually win, but his peanut gallery is smug and EXTREMELY annoying. He's annoying too, as he's pretty freaking smug, but a smug player is MUCH easier to live with than 2-4 people watching you play and chuckling when you lose.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Jamfalcon » 28 Jun 2013, 09:20

I've only ever gone to one event, which was the RTR prerelease. Even at my local store, which is pretty small (they have trouble getting 8 people for FNM many weeks) and not exactly full of good players, I still found the competitiveness off–putting, and while I played decently, I really didn't enjoy it very much.

I mostly play Magic as something to do before or after D&D, so I ply pretty much exclusively with the same four people. We mostly play commander (my commanders are, in order of preference, Kazuul, Animar, old Niv-Mizzet, and Lazav), and I have a mediocre four person cube I threw together in an afternoon that we draft sometimes. Nobody in the group is interested in sticking to standard, especially since none of us really go to events, so when we do play with 60 cards, it's technically legacy, though in the sense that we just use whatever. Nobody is good enough at the game or willing to spend enough to completely unbalance the power levels, so it works out for us.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Kapol » 28 Jun 2013, 11:26

One thing to mention: I didn't notice Duckay mention her friend's deck was based on her's. That makes things different. It also makes things much more murky. But oh well.

Also, I really only categorize what Hosk said as net-decking too. Since... ya'know, it kind of is. Using a person's deck that you know, even just straight up copying it, isn't actually netdecking.

Finally, for the limited thing, I agree. I try to avoid giving my opinions on cards when friends put them in their decks. Doesn't mean I don't end up doing it because I can't help myself. That's normally when they're playing one of the really bad cards in a format. And even then I try not to. Sometimes words come out of my mouth and I can't help it.

But straight-up having someone else build your deck for you is frankly cheating in a competitive sense. I could see someone helping build a deck when drafting among friends for no prizes if the person isn't good at limited and you're trying to help them learn. I could even see someone actually helping another person draft when it's strictly among friends. I do, however, think that person shouldn't be part of the draft or limited themselves. If it's sealed, it's not quite such a big deal since their pool won't change. In draft it's more iffy. But if everyone is cool with it going in, I suppose I wouldn't object.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby AdmiralMemo » 03 Jul 2013, 19:49

I've only been to one event, and played two sealed RTR games: http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Planeswalk ... 1300275330

With physical cards, I've tried to build theme decks, like elf decks, goblin decks, etc.
I'm currently in the process of trying to sort cards and make Commander decks, as that seems like fun to play physically.

On MtGO, I draft, and use my winnings to make Standard and Commander decks that seem fun. Just anything other than straight aggro, which I see too much of. Also, Momir, Jhoira, and StoneHewer Giant are pretty great to play.

Now, what I like to play in the RTR block is either Dimir or Izzet, but what I'm best at playing is Orzhov. Outside the RTR block, I usually end up playing red and/or green.
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Re: MTG Getting To Know You

Postby Drecon » 04 Jul 2013, 00:20

My play experience is signified by two main things:

1: I always try to do something different (might be a new format, a weird deck or just some new card in a deck that I already play)

2: I always want to play to the best of my ability. (If I play well and lose I'm still happy)

These days I almost solely play online, mostly draft. I want to play constructed, but it's just too expensive most of the time. (I have good hopes of landing a job though...)
Apart from lots of drafting I mostly like to enter a constructed format with some weird off-the-wall deck and just play it so much better than those net-deckers that I just win off that.

Magic to me is about having fun in new and creative ways. Drafting works because each draft is a completely new experience and there usually hardly is a metagame. Also, there's a lot of skill involved, which is really rewarding.
Constructed for me is about building new and creative decks, even if I don't get to play them at all. Finding new formats or new ways to attack old formats is basically the reason why I stay in the game.
"if it ain't shiny, rub it on your hiney"

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